Please help, I can’t concentrate!

I have to do SAT prep, however, I am very distracted. I keep coming back to my phone and then coding. I noted something I heard from a psychologist - your mind can only focus for 20 minutes continuously without wandering past the task. How can I stop the distractions? I’ve tried using a code I wrote to cut my phone from the internet, but I keep stopping my code and checking my notifications. I’m trying to take a test, but my mind keeps wandering! I’m 14 years old so I’m still quite young. I do not have any mental conditions(besides mild anxiety, paruresis, and misophonia).

Not very nice for you, but what makes you think that in a technical forum about Garuda your concentration problems can be remedied?

As a layman, I could advise you to try some autogenic training, but what do I know?


I’m aware, but I know most of the people here to be very wise people who can likely help my case. In retrospect, I could have posted it on a mental health forum. Apologies.


sudo pacman -S adderall? :grin:

Set up study sprints. For 15 to 20 minutes focus on the SAT prep. Use an alarm so you don't have the distraction of tracking the time.
Then get out of your seat and do something physical, like walk or push-ups or just pace your room, for one to five minutes (you'll find the right balance with experimenting) to let your mind rest.
Then set up your alarm again and do another study sprint.

Good luck on the SAT!


Put your phone in another room. Study for 20-30 minutes. Then go look at your phone if you really need to.

I used to be tethered to my phone. Learning to accept that I can put my down and ignore it when I want to has made my life so much better.

PS. Is it normal to take the SATs when you are 14 now? I feel like I was 17 when I took them.


Some of us are smarter than others, @dalto
...and unfortunately I'm in the latter group. sob!


No worries, most people that use Linux are either heavily self medicated or go for the styling tin foil hat look.

You're in great company. :rofl: :crazy_face:


That's rubbish. I remember studying 3-4 hours in a row, without thinking about anything else, when I was preparing for JEE. And tbh, scoring full in SAT Mathematics is not a big deal.

All you have to do is focus on Mathematics questions, and everything else disappeares for you. Some tips:

  1. Delete the applications from your smartphone that are wasting your time, like I removed youtube. Remove all the games(if any)
  2. Sit on a chair and table while studying. And chair should be a simple plastic/wooden one, without foam.
  3. Solve previous year SAT papers and analyze your performance on daily basis.
  4. Do not be afraid of result. Remember, all you can do is work, but you can't control result.

When I was 15, I attempted SAT Mathematics paper, at home(not officially). And I scored around 90%. But I never actually appeared for SAT, because (i) English is not my mother tongue and (ii) I love India and I can't leave it.


One word, "Adderall."


How was your JEE? Did you go for any coaching? How long back was it?
I, too, am preparing for JEE, enrolled at FIITJEE NW :sweat_smile:, you might know about it.

I was in Aakash. I got nice percentile, 99.588 in mains


Where did you do your Bachelors, and in which field?

SAT? JEE? Are these secondary school degrees? Forgive my ignorance :slight_smile:


Collegiate entrance and placement examinations.

SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test) in the USA and JEE (Joint Entrance Examination) in India.

Though I prefer the old name for the Indian exam, All India Engineering Entrance Examination, since the acronym is "AIEEE" - which probably better fits young aspiring engineer's feelings about it. :grin:


Interesting. I don't even know if we have something similar here :slight_smile:
For university, you need a BAC/Abitur/Matura/Baccalauréat, which is usually attained at the age of 18-20.


Same here
I am also 14 years student but I can't focus on study but when exams are coming then I have to study for very long time because I haven't studied earlier very much and when exams end
I start learning new things related to computers,
write code and thinking how can I improve this code and learning new things in Linux

1 Like

Currently using adderall-git. Is that one more stable?


Definately. On adderall-git my machine started running three to five at once. I mean, the application performance was amazing, but the kernel panics, jittering and bluetooth decay quickly became insufferable. :cry:


Follow this code

while self.focus_mode and self.mind.wandering.strength > 10){
      self.realize_task_is_fun('SAT Maths');

if(self.focus.timer >=25 mins){
   self.focus_mode = false;
   self.walk(5 min);

If you are able to focus clearly on the above code then you are at a good place.


That's because we are driven to look for dopamine. There is no beating it and more when what we study is not of our personal interest.

Maybe you could try my method of chunking. It may give you the immersion effect to get you going.

Instead of writing what the books say when taking notes, you write question that you have know the answer of.

As an example, the books says:

"An URL has 5 parts, a protocol, a prefix, a domain, a suffix and html pages"

And you don't write that on your notes, instead your note will be:

"What are the 5 parts of an URL?"

You read the notes and if you don't remember you read ti again until you remember all questions.

This is my own invention and haven't applied it to a proper course but I remember that example (that I just read the question the next day) over 6 years and I don't think of that at all so normally I would forget it but maybe my tech mind snatched it into high Nice levels not sure if really effective but I guess it can get you immersed into the subject of study.

All the best